Words have power. We invest them with the strength to cut or bind. We use them without thinking about their origin or meaning. We know the meaning…or at least the meaning we want to ascribe to them. But does that mean everyone gives the same word the same meaning or weight? Can a word ever just be? Does it always have to have power?
People can lose their power. So can places and things. But what about words? A word is an abstract substitute for a concrete idea (huh?). Imagine how lost you are when you can’t find the right word. Words knit us together.
Yet, we carelessly throw them about like they’re pineapples instead of grenades. They can still break open [one’s worse; I hate being sticky].
We’ve changed words and warped their meaning. Some words are forgotten or have become useless, even meaningless. But do they still have power? If you whisper a long forgotten word into existence once more, do you imbue it with power?
I suppose you could try it, but you run the risk of upsetting the balance of nature (like global warming?) or unmaking another…if you believe in that sort of thing.
Of course, it could just be that words are simply words. They only have value because we give them meanings. Their power comes from us. Without us, words wouldn’t hurt or help. They’d just float along waiting for someone to speak them. Sad and lonely.
A word without a tongue is like a limerick without a rhyme, a printer without ink, a pen without paper. We may waste away, but words remain forever.
Until at last, they consider giving into despair. That’s when a hero comes along. Sometimes a scholar or well-read librarian, other times a neophyte adventurer searching for the perfect word.
As you travel the world, please, don’t forsake your dictionary. Too many words depend on you. They need your help. Will you sponsor a word today? It’s easy and only takes a few minutes of your time. Simply open your dictionary and begin reading out loud. You could open at random or start at the beginning.
Who knows, you might even surprise yourself. Magic awaits…